Ambulance Officers reported a positive meeting with the Minister for Policing and Community Services this morning.
Minister Jack Dempsey, who is a former Police Officer, listened to the concerns of Officers and said he had a good understanding of the difficulties they face on the ground on a daily basis.
The major issues brought to his attention were ramping, staffing and housing difficulties. Despite the fact the problem of ramping has been an ongoing issue, it is having a very real impact on paramedics’ ability to deliver quality services. While staffing levels have dropped so low there are shifts left uncovered which is endangering lives.
Another very real problem for Ambulance Officers is the cost of accommodation which in some areas has jumped to 1,000 dollars a week virtually overnight. It means that many simply cannot afford to pay their rent.
Minister Dempsey was also told that Officers in Queensland are among the lowest paid in the country despite being consistently rated as the most trusted profession. They deserve to be paid in line with their counterparts in other states.
The Minister took on board the concerns raised and did commit to tackling the major problems in the sector. It was a common consensus that this could only be done through constant consultation and regular meetings between the Minister and Ambulance Officers.